Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sat 8th Jul 2006 08:07 UTC
Apple A few months ago Thom bought and reviewed an iMac G3 333 Mhz while it was running Mac OS 9. I was always fond of the looks of the classic iMacs. They were just too cute to not want one. Recently Geeks.com restocked their Mac line with refurbished iMac G3s. They sent us one in, a 400 Mhz DV model (first released in October 1999) and we tried out not only Mac OS 9.2.2 but also the latest Mac OS X, v10.4.7. Read more as to how this old good classic iMac G3 performed.
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RE
by Kroc on Sat 8th Jul 2006 08:42 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

This is one of the impressive things about OS X - that it gets more efficient with each release. This is down to two things though:

1) It was so damned slow in 10.0 to start with, and
2) Each version uses a bit more RAM.

But now at the Tiger stage you can't argue with 30s boot times on a modern machine, it is very fast. Unlike trying to upgrade from Windows 98 to Windows XP on an old machine, going from 10.1 to 10.4 is actually a much better choice than sticking with old software.

It's this aspect that still reminds me of those 'innocent days', where ever-optimized code meant eeking more out of old hardware.

Reply Score: 5

I would buy one...
by eddie303 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 08:49 UTC
eddie303
Member since:
2005-07-12

...but I have no possibility right now, I'd use it for running Linux, I always admired these iMacs, but I actually never saw one, only on pictures and videos. I live in Transylvania, where Macs are very rare.

Reply Score: 1

v RE: I would buy one...
by BlackJack75 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:17 UTC in reply to "I would buy one..."
A remark!!!
by Hakime on Sat 8th Jul 2006 08:51 UTC
Hakime
Member since:
2005-11-16

Tiger really works, try to run Vista on such a hardware you will end up using old, ugly crapy user interface and a slow system. Here you still get all the beauty of OS X.

I mean most of the Aqua effects and OS X graphical depedent features like Expose are here running on a ATI Rage 128 with 8 MB of video memory, that's quite impressive, ....i must admit!!!!!!

Reply Score: 5

RE: A remark!!!
by anonymousbrowser on Sat 8th Jul 2006 09:57 UTC in reply to "A remark!!!"
anonymousbrowser Member since:
2006-04-28

Well, your first most tricky task would probably be finding a PPC port of vista.

Seriously though, i don't care how well these machines run OS9 or OSX, i want to know how compatible they are with the latest PPC Linux distributions.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: A remark!!!
by SyGo on Sat 8th Jul 2006 10:09 UTC in reply to "RE: A remark!!!"
SyGo Member since:
2006-07-08

They are very much compatible.

From what I gathered there are new-world and old-world Apples, anything "new-world" will run most PCC linuxes out there.

I've got Ubuntu Breezy running on a Blueberry Rev.A Imac (that would be a 233Mhz PPC, mind you) loaded with 256Mb of RAM. It runs okay to browse the web, use openoffice, if you are a zen kind of guy you might even manage to do something with gimp. ;)

My master plan was to load the imac with a 300Gb HD and make it a file server but it would be half of what I ordered due to HD size restrictions (160Gb, I think) aside from that everything is peachy.

oh, and I couldn't compile a few things, but the only serious "why, oh why?!?!" was Wine, everything else was just fluff I could do without.

Edited 2006-07-08 10:14

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: A remark!!!
by Jack Malmostoso on Sat 8th Jul 2006 14:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A remark!!!"
Jack Malmostoso Member since:
2006-01-20

Why oh why... mostly because Wine Is Not An Emulator, so it cannot be installed on anything non-x86.

Seriously, linux on PPC only lacks flash (if you really need it). Otherwise, it's a great alternative (although with some quirks here and there, surely not for the unexperienced newbie) to buying OSX to revive an old Mac.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: A remark!!!
by SyGo on Sun 9th Jul 2006 10:26 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: A remark!!!"
SyGo Member since:
2006-07-08

ah, that explains it. thanks.

I agree, A month ago I got a 700Mhz ibook on ebay which comparing to the imac, I'd imagine would make Mac Os and Unbuntu run nicely. I wasn't wrong. I haven't loaded ubuntu into it for now because I'm having way too much fun with Mac Os, and it does handle it very gracefuly (the 640Mb of Ram help a bit).

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: A remark!!!
by netpython on Sat 8th Jul 2006 17:33 UTC in reply to "RE: A remark!!!"
netpython Member since:
2005-07-06

I bet they will run even faster with Yellow Dog and CO :-)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: A remark!!!
by SyGo on Sun 9th Jul 2006 13:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A remark!!!"
SyGo Member since:
2006-07-08

I don't doubt it. but these days linux distros are a bit like shopping for candy. gummy bears, marshmellows, popcorn or jaw-breakers. faster or slower, safer or not so safe, ready made packaging or compile during night time; it's not a question of what's sweeter but all a question of mood.

I'm tottally into the kool-aid of ubuntu right now...

I'll follow you tip an check out Yellow Dog, but what's CO?

Reply Score: 1

v RE: A remark!!!
by Bringbackanonposting on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:32 UTC in reply to "A remark!!!"
v RE: A remark!!!
by CVDpr on Sat 8th Jul 2006 21:01 UTC in reply to "A remark!!!"
Buy one for myself?
by Ronald Vos on Sat 8th Jul 2006 08:54 UTC
Ronald Vos
Member since:
2005-07-06

Where would I put it eh? ;)
/me sees 2 PCs and an old-world mac filling up desk

In a way it's funny, there's a lot of people sticking to OS9, even though the available software is getting less and less adequate (as average user's software needs expand), not being updated any more.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Buy one for myself?
by eddie303 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 09:19 UTC in reply to "Buy one for myself?"
eddie303 Member since:
2005-07-12

Ditto, a laptop, a desktop PC and a Performa 5200 which is mostly used as a TV...

Reply Score: 1

For Kids & innocence
by transputer_guy on Sat 8th Jul 2006 09:52 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

BTW how does this unit handle Flash, Shock web animations like the games on pbskids.org that my lil ones are addicted too. At this age they would appreciate the fruity colors too.

I have to give up Athlon xp2400s to satisfy them, the old K6 400 was just too pathetic at that and pathetic at anything else on the web too (w2K), each patch just made it slower & slower, I actually threw it down the basement.

Looks like geeks.com doesn't have too many to choose from atleast mostly 333MHz C's and CD only.

Reply Score: 1

RE: For Kids & innocence
by rm6990 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:14 UTC in reply to "For Kids & innocence"
rm6990 Member since:
2005-07-04

Any heavy flash usage is going to make the thing crawl. i know this because i have a G4/400 MHz (Powermac) and it runs awesome for most basic tasks, EXCEPT for Flash (stupid CPU cycle and memory pig). Flash 9 didn't help at all. Ajax apps can be a bit slow as well, but even things like Google Calendar are still completely usable. However, this is on a G4, and I have no experience with a G3. The G4, despite at the same clock rate, is probably still faster than the G3.

Of course, my Core Duo Mini is a lot better :-)

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: For Kids & innocence
by BlackJack75 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:19 UTC in reply to "RE: For Kids & innocence"
BlackJack75 Member since:
2005-08-29

Definitely. Even on a 1.2 ghz ibook flash was slow. The PPC version of flash simply isn't as optimised as the windows version.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: For Kids & innocence
by Epyon on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: For Kids & innocence"
Epyon Member since:
2005-11-21

While flash certainly uses an assload of CPU time on my ibook g4 1.4ghz it doesn't make the whole machine crawl. Flash runs significantly better on my ibook than it does on my other 1.1ghz celeron laptop.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: For Kids & innocence
by junior on Sat 8th Jul 2006 18:28 UTC in reply to "RE: For Kids & innocence"
junior Member since:
2005-07-07

Any heavy flash usage is going to make the thing crawl

So? Just dump the flash plugin. Hell, I contemplated doing just that on even my MacBookPro.

I wish websites would stop using flash based advertisements. I hate those with a passion.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: For Kids & innocence
by transputer_guy on Sat 8th Jul 2006 18:51 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: For Kids & innocence"
transputer_guy Member since:
2005-07-08

Your missing the point, for one reason or another pbskids.org and others use it for games the young kids enjoy that matches the shows they watch, otherwise I'd turn it off in a beat. I am not entirely sure about this, but then its the way things are now, as long as they are educational, skill development etc.

From all the other comments, thanks, it looks so so, maybe I will get one for myself anyway to replace my doorstop 60MHz 6100.

FWIW, I also love to watch Noody, Jakers, etc its the CGI, way better than the hand drawn art I saw 40yrs ago.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: For Kids & innocence
by rm6990 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 19:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: For Kids & innocence"
rm6990 Member since:
2005-07-04

Did you even bother checking which comment I was responding to and then reading it? The poster I was responding to specifically asked about Flash games that his kid likes to play, and how well they will run on these machines. I told him my thoughts on the matter.

Please explain to me how he can dump the flash plugin and let his kid play the flash games at the same time....

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: For Kids & innocence
by Saquatch666 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 13:59 UTC in reply to "For Kids & innocence"
Saquatch666 Member since:
2006-01-02

I picked up a couple from a differtent source on the net(400MHZ iMacs) and they seemed to work ok for flash games in OSX and my kid loved em but they are really hard to work on and have buggy graphics cards that sometimes don't display right or not at all,my kid didn't like them at first ,she was used to her linux powered Intel DotStation,but she quickly adjusted the only thing is they were old scool computers and there was no root access and a lot of IE's featuress were disabled at the root level,but they seemed to overlook safari,so we used that as a browser,they worked for awhile but soon they got to the point they wouldn't display,although they would hooking an external monitor up,leading me to believe the problem was in the CRT itself,these things due to thier all in one design are a roya pita to work on and now they have both joined my collection of boat anchors and doorstops,but at 75 bucks for the 2 of them it was a fun experiment,one of these in pristine condition probably would be awesome especially if it came with the original OS discs so you could run it as root,i did get around this somewhat by runniong OS 9.2 on them as well,at least i had total freedom to do what I wanted there,nowadays I have her set up as a user on my Mepis Linux box and she can play her flash games there

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: For Kids & innocence
by corrosive23 on Sun 9th Jul 2006 15:50 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: For Kids & innocence"
corrosive23 Member since:
2005-07-11

Or you could have just found a copy of osx and reseting the password.

Reply Score: 1

for mom
by evert on Sat 8th Jul 2006 09:53 UTC
evert
Member since:
2005-07-06

i gave a 333 mhz g3 imac which i equipped with 512 MB RAM to my mom. she just needs browsing (firefox) and email (thunderbird) and she really likes the machine. it's pretty fast, it looks good and macosx is very stable. and better - it's very easy to use. yes, g3 imacs are very usable for non-tecnical people with simple needs.

Reply Score: 4

Safari, Camino or even IE5
by rm6990 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:27 UTC
rm6990
Member since:
2005-07-04

Just a hint for anyone considering these, stick with Safari. On a faster Mac or an Intel one, you can't notice much difference between Safari's and Firefox's speed, but on a slower Mac like these, Safari kicks the pants off of Firefox for pretty much anything. If you just must use a Gecko browser, I recommend Camino over Firefox, as it is faster as well (it sits between Firefox and Safari on a speed scale). Or, use IE5 for Mac (on OS 9 or OS X) for the fastest speed *ducks*. Be prepared to sacrafice features if you go that route though.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Safari, Camino or even IE5
by Dave_K on Sat 8th Jul 2006 16:37 UTC in reply to "Safari, Camino or even IE5"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

Another alternative worth trying is Opera. I haven't used it on a G3 Mac, but it runs brilliantly on low end PCs.

I regularly web browse quite heavily on an old 400Mhz Celeron laptop running Windows 2K and Opera hardly ever feels slow, even flash heavy sites run pretty well. On the same system IE and Firefox are significantly slower and can become almost unusable with a large number of pages open.

Of course you probably need to run OS X to use a recent version, I don't think Opera have supported OS 9 for a while.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Safari, Camino or even IE5
by paperfrog on Sat 8th Jul 2006 18:37 UTC in reply to "Safari, Camino or even IE5"
paperfrog Member since:
2006-01-01

Camino seems faster than Safari to me on low-end Macs. But you're right: firefox is quite slow on OS X.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Safari, Camino or even IE5
by PowerMacX on Sun 9th Jul 2006 04:57 UTC in reply to "Safari, Camino or even IE5"
PowerMacX Member since:
2005-11-06

Just a hint for anyone considering these, stick with Safari. On a faster Mac or an Intel one, you can't notice much difference between Safari's and Firefox's speed, but on a slower Mac like these, Safari kicks the pants off of Firefox for pretty much anything. If you just must use a Gecko browser, I recommend Camino over Firefox, as it is faster as well (it sits between Firefox and Safari on a speed scale).

I completely agree, and was about to mod you up until I read your next sentence:

Or, use IE5 for Mac (on OS 9 or OS X) for the fastest speed *ducks*. Be prepared to sacrafice features if you go that route though.

IE5 is incredibly-utterly-amazingly slow on OS X, bar none. On OS 9 it's still slow, although not so annoying.

(Not that it matters, but I didn't mod you down either)

Reply Score: 1

RE: Safari, Camino or even IE5
by deathshadow on Sun 9th Jul 2006 05:18 UTC in reply to "Safari, Camino or even IE5"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Just a hint for anyone considering these, stick with Safari. On a faster Mac or an Intel one, you can't notice much difference between Safari's and Firefox's speed, but on a slower Mac like these, Safari kicks the pants off of Firefox for pretty much anything.

Or try Opera - remember, Opera MAKES browsers for embedded machines right down to Symbain equipped cell phones, they know a thing or two about lean.

Safari's pretty good too, but still falls a hair short on the site compatability.

Reply Score: 1

Linux on iMac
by dtravis7 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 11:27 UTC
dtravis7
Member since:
2005-07-14

I about 1 year ago ran the latest Ubuntu Linux on my old 333Mhz iMac Grape with 320Megs RAM. It was not bad at all and quite fast. I was very impressed. All hardware was found and worked. The only thing I did not try was the 56k Modem under Ubuntu.

Edited 2006-07-08 11:27

Reply Score: 2

Newworld vs. oldworld
by henrikmk on Sat 8th Jul 2006 12:38 UTC
henrikmk
Member since:
2005-07-10

It's important to get a newworld machine, because I had quite a lot of trouble getting Panther to work on my old beige Powermac G3 333 Mhz.

Using XPostFacto, a lot of patience and reading, I finally got it running. It was OK fast, but it was crashy due to the hardware not being supported properly. The best uptime I got was about 7 days.

Jaguar is supported, but is so much slower that it just wouldn't be worth it. The speed upgrade with Panther is really worth it. I haven't been able to try with Tiger.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Newworld vs. oldworld
by Dark_Knight on Sat 8th Jul 2006 18:41 UTC in reply to "Newworld vs. oldworld"
Dark_Knight Member since:
2005-07-10

Henrikmk,

Your comment is not necessarily true for every individual. Some users especially those running a business or school with low budgets are interested in keeping older hardware running a few years longer with new software (OS and applications). I've actually installed Linux distributions on what some would claim is very outdated hardware for friends and family looking to have a simple home computer. Such systems aren't going to run the latest games but we have to remember computers are not first thought of as a gaming system, that's what game consoles are for. One advantage I've noticed both with Linux distributions and OSX is the ability to support a wider range of hardware both new and old than Windows XP/Vista. Another advantage I've noticed is their ability to use less memory than Windows as well not become bloated over time even when running 24/7.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Newworld vs. oldworld
by Innova on Sat 8th Jul 2006 23:59 UTC in reply to "RE: Newworld vs. oldworld"
Innova Member since:
2005-09-30

What the original post is getting that is not 'old versus new' hardware. But, what have been termed 'old world and new world' macs.

The old world macs (as far as I remember) boot of an internal ROM and make installig alternative OS's difficult (if not impossible). The new world ones use a more "traditional" bios type boot process, therefore, installing alternative OS's (other that OS 8/9) is easier.

The "new world" MACS are anything but recent hardware. They go back to the G3 powermacs (the blue cased towers).

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Newworld vs. oldworld
by memson on Mon 10th Jul 2006 00:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Newworld vs. oldworld"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

> The old world macs (as far as I remember) boot of an
> internal ROM and make installig alternative OS's
> difficult (if not impossible). The new world ones
> use a more "traditional" bios type boot process,
> therefore, installing alternative OS's (other that
> OS 8/9) is easier.

From my understanding.... the old world _POWER_ macs (Power being important to note here) use a "BIOS" of the same nature to the New w orld ones. The difference is in revision. The BIOS is known as Open Firmware. The Oldworld machines have somewhat broken Open firmware, so booting from OF is a nightmare. What works on one model of Mac might not on another etc.

Newworld Macs have a better version of OF. Apple obviously had to make it more reliable as they also have no ROM containing the Toolbox routines, as all prior Macs did. The ROM is uploaded from disk at boot.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Newworld vs. oldworld
by memson on Sat 8th Jul 2006 23:14 UTC in reply to "Newworld vs. oldworld"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

Jaguar is extremely usable on my Beige G3.. mine is a 266MHz model... It has Maxed out RAM though, so maybe that helps?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Newworld vs. oldworld
by henrikmk on Mon 10th Jul 2006 16:22 UTC in reply to "Newworld vs. oldworld"
henrikmk Member since:
2005-07-10

Of course it's subjective, and perhaps also because Panther introduced features like Exposť which I find to be very useful and a less cumbersome Finder. This helps to speed up the use of OSX. Panther was what made it possible for me to use it as a daily desktop, just barely. The unit had 512 MB RAM.

What I found was that if you want to showcase Apple stuff, OSX and things like that, an oldworld machine might not be the best idea. I had stability problems and lots of problems getting Panther running without tinkering a lot. In no way was it a plug'n'play experience. But when it was running, it was beautiful.

It's a good way to demonstrate how fast OSX has become over the years.

I haven't tried running other OS'es on it except OS9 which runs very fast, but I'm inclined to believe that it would run smaller OS'es quite fast, so the old beige powermacs are not useless at all.

Reply Score: 1

Panther requirements
by MonkeyPie on Sat 8th Jul 2006 12:53 UTC
MonkeyPie
Member since:
2005-07-06

I agree with most of the article. My sister recently wanted MY old iMac I kept in the closet for sentimental reasons. It was quite a bit newer than yours, a 500mhz Graphite DV with full gig of ram, but she loves the thing and even though it is "old" based on modern standards, the thing performs very well with OS X.

One gripe I do have with the article though, Panther did not require FireWire. It worked with ALL models of the iMac even the ones without FireWire.

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106163

JRM7

Reply Score: 5

I would absolutely love ...
by aGNUstic on Sat 8th Jul 2006 13:28 UTC
aGNUstic
Member since:
2005-07-28

To have older Macs. I live in a region of the US where these machines are very rare.

Reply Score: 2

Trim The System Down
by Agent69 on Sat 8th Jul 2006 14:30 UTC
Agent69
Member since:
2005-07-07

Dashboard doesn't use memory unless you activate it, but it was probably still a good idea to disable it.

Other things to look at are Spotlight and Cups, both of which can be disabled in /etc/hostconfig. Another thing to do is keep the desktop completely clear of icons (as each icon is its own little quartz window that uses a little bit of memory).

Reply Score: 2

I have one.
by mike hess on Sat 8th Jul 2006 14:45 UTC
mike hess
Member since:
2005-08-22

I found one in suprisingly good condition out at someone's curb a year ago. I tinkered with it for a while, installing OSX (10.3), and messing around with it. Actually it is my first (and only) Mac.

It does run OSX pretty well, but it gets bogged down quickly running Firefox, even with 512MB.

I ended up long-term-loaning it to my girlfriend who teaches elementary special education. She got a lot of use out of it in the classroom.

Reply Score: 1

RE
by sbenitezb on Sat 8th Jul 2006 15:02 UTC
sbenitezb
Member since:
2005-07-22

"Unlike trying to upgrade from Windows 98 to Windows XP on an old machine, going from 10.1 to 10.4 is actually a much better choice than sticking with old software."

Do you realize the big difference between Win98 (DOS based) and WinXP (NT based)?

10.1 and 10.4 are upgrades to a major version. You should compare instead Mac OS 9 and X.

Reply Score: 2

RE
by Kroc on Sat 8th Jul 2006 16:24 UTC in reply to "RE"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

That's very true, but OS9 had good boot times, OS 10.0 was a huge step backwards. XD

Reply Score: 1

Good points
by fak3r on Sat 8th Jul 2006 15:36 UTC
fak3r
Member since:
2006-04-12

I have a 400 iMac DV / 512M RAM / Airport for my daughter (just turning 6) running OSX and she loves it. Plays almost all the educational games that she can in Windows, and Safari allows her to play all the shockwave games online that are so popular these days. It's a little slow for those, but not anything that bothers her. I've been telling folks about what a great idea these systems are for kids, they're cute, they work, and are pretty bullet proof. Add add the DVD player and they even have a movie machine for when they have sleepovers.

My son is 3 1/2 and shares the system that is in her big sister's room, but I'm about ready to buy another iMac for him to play with, since she got so much out of it for reading/math/etc before kindergaten.

Oh, and Tux Paint is a winner and runs on lin/mac/win; all kids love it.

Reply Score: 5

Boot Up Time
by Excel Hearts Choi on Sat 8th Jul 2006 15:51 UTC
Excel Hearts Choi
Member since:
2006-07-08

What is the boot up time on OS 9 anyways? Thanks.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Boot Up Time
by parrotjoe on Sat 8th Jul 2006 16:15 UTC in reply to "Boot Up Time"
parrotjoe Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't have an iMac anymore, so I can't time it, but the faster G3's, boot up time is not long at all. The extensions have to load, but that goes fast in the later, faster models.

Reply Score: 1

Firewire comment
by Kancept on Sat 8th Jul 2006 16:11 UTC
Kancept
Member since:
2006-01-09

Why is that comment about industry first mentioned? For one, it wasn't an industry first to include firewire by any stretch of the imagination. Maybe an Apple first. My 200 Mhz Sony VAIO laptop has a firewire port "IEEE1394, i-Link, whathaveyou". I know for a fact that Compaq used to put firewire ports on their machines, same deal, circa 233 Mhz. So *how* is including firewire ports an industry first?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Firewire comment
by Eugenia on Sat 8th Jul 2006 17:46 UTC in reply to "Firewire comment"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Industry first for TWO firewire ports. Please read more carefully.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Firewire comment
by Kancept on Sun 9th Jul 2006 00:07 UTC in reply to "RE: Firewire comment"
Kancept Member since:
2006-01-09

No it wasn't! I *read* the article. Compaq PCs came with 2 firewire ports back in the day. One in the front, and another on the rear. Please do some research before making assumptions, or statements read by a large audience. Ignorance is no excuse.

I liken it to Apple stating they had the first consumer dual CPU machine when we know damn well Be, Inc was making em. It's just wrong. Just because the populace doesn't know, doesn't make it right.

I hardly comment on this site, but when I do, I try to do my research beforehand.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Firewire comment
by Governa on Sun 9th Jul 2006 03:15 UTC in reply to "Firewire comment"
Governa Member since:
2006-04-09

Actually FireWire was developed by Apple Computer in the early 1990s.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Firewire comment
by Kancept on Mon 10th Jul 2006 13:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Firewire comment"
Kancept Member since:
2006-01-09

I know who it was developed by, and it was called IEEE-1394 before Apple decided to name it firewire. All the same thing- firewire, IEEE1394, i-Link.

That's not what we were discussing- we are talking about the number of ports on the machines. Not that it matters much anymore.

Try to keep up. :-)

Reply Score: 1

As someone
by deathshadow on Sat 8th Jul 2006 17:39 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

Who has ressurected a few G3 iBooks using OS X (by way of XpostFacto4) I'm not too surprised at the results. You get the RAM up to 320megs (or 288 megs in the case of the iBooks) and it doesn't run half bad...

Though... you may want to consider opening it up. A LOT of the apple G3's don't even have heat sinks on ANYTHING - often times they'll have insulating foam and in the case of the iBooks, a RF shield directly over the CPU - which in the iBooks also means the dialup adapter gets scorched because of it's poor placement.

See, with the G3 line Apple had this recurring tendency on the cheaper models to use a processor 200-300mhz faster than what the end product ran at - then skimped on the cooling technology (if they put any in to begin with!)

Once you pop it open, remove the 'in the way' stuff you can toss some heatsinks in there on the northbridge, video chipset and CPU... Then you can overclock safely up 133-166mhz. Case in point, I'm running my 266mhz iBook at 433mhz, and I've yet to see the heat sink get above 90C - ZERO stability issues, and that's without a fan, I just removed the dailup modem to make room for a heat sink... although resoldering the resistors is NOT for the timid - on most of the desktops you usually at least have JUMPERS. I looked up the CPU on IBM's website, and the particular G3 in that 'generation one single USB toilet seat' is rated up to 500mhz - the only reason I cannot go that high is the RAM on the mainboard is only rated to 66mhz, so no upping the bus speed.

So yes, a 400mhz or faster G3 with 288megs is entirely useable on OSX - I'm very pleased to hear the DVD playback didn't drop frames, though that could be the video chipset has better support. I know last time I tried DVD playback in my iBook it was a joke - I'll probably upgrade the OS (it's running Panther) and see if it's any better.

I'd be very interested in hearing someones experience with the overclocking these refurbished units and if geek.com has done anything about the cooling internally.

Reply Score: 5

DVD drives
by transputer_guy on Sat 8th Jul 2006 18:20 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

Another question.

Since alot of these refurbs have no DVD drive, and no OS disks, will a generic external slimline Liteon USB2 DVD drive be recognized, and can that be used to take Sys8 to 9 to OSX?

I see that alot of these refurbers, sell other component upgrades, and even a slim DVD drive for the iMacs costs upto same or more than the whole iMac does. I can see that alot of these fully refubished to be fully useable is going to be alot more than $100 unless I get lucky.

Reply Score: 1

RE: DVD drives
by deathshadow on Sat 8th Jul 2006 21:06 UTC in reply to "DVD drives"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Since alot of these refurbs have no DVD drive, and no OS disks, will a generic external slimline Liteon USB2 DVD drive be recognized, and can that be used to take Sys8 to 9 to OSX?

Now THAT's a good question, and it's not an easy answer... It really depends on the model of iMac - and that can even vary if it comes in the same CASE.

There are three arrangements I've found inside the iMacs... a version that allows you to use the drive's select switch... the standard cable that does cable select... and then the real bastard which is the most common - the direct connection that requires the drive 'short' the slave pins, but for some reason doesn't work with the normal 'slave' switch on older drives (and newer drives like DVD Combo and DVD RW don't even HAVE selector switches in the slimline platform)

As this is the most common config in both the iBooks and iMacs, the solution is a bit... ugly, but functional and also solves the 'slave/master' switch problem if your drive doesn't have one. Apple usually uses a different internal connector than a standard mini-ide (common practice in laptops, and the iMacs use a LOT of laptop tech') - thankfully their drives are standard mini-ide and they attach a cable that wraps around the drive to 'make it fit'. You hard short pins 47 and 45 on that cable using a trace pen (making it easy to undo if it doesn't work) and all those new cable-select only drives work in most of the G3 iBooks and iMacs.

Here's a pic of the one out of my iBook.
http://battletech.hopto.org/mac_modding/macmod.jpg

Some iMacs use this same cable, some don't... but if the drive doesn't work on cable select or with the switch (if any) in master/slave or CS, this mod will usually do the trick.

The other problem you'll encounter is the bezel - to me having a non-matching bezel isn't the end of the world, but if you are modding a friction feed iMac you either need a friction feed replacement drive, or to hack the bezel back so there's a slot for the tray... in the tray based you can TRY to see if the old drive's faceplate will fit the new drive, but Apple used a proprietary layout on the faceplate so the lights and eject switches generally don't line up. I've seen some mods (on sites like macmod.com) to 'convert' the switches over - me, I just used the faceplate my DVD/RW came with; oh well, it doesn't match the rest of the case. I'll live.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: DVD drives
by transputer_guy on Sun 9th Jul 2006 06:52 UTC in reply to "RE: DVD drives"
transputer_guy Member since:
2005-07-08

Long answer but missed the real question.

Do these old guys boot off External generic slimline Liteon type DVD (includes CD Writing) drives with system disk in it?

I probably wouldn't bother changing out the old CD drive.

Reply Score: 1

RE
by sbenitezb on Sat 8th Jul 2006 19:00 UTC
sbenitezb
Member since:
2005-07-22

I don't think boot time is really an important factor. I don't reboot my PC (Linux here) often. Software is becoming more complex, with lots of technologies supported. Drivers have to be loaded when a new device is detected, more libraries have to be loaded to support all this new technology that wasn't available those old days of Win98. Antivirus eat resources, office applications partially loaded on background also eat resources (compare a just installed WinXP and one with Office and you will notice the difference). Add more eye candy, new upcoming technologies and systems actually take more time to boot (unless they are cheating loading things after you logon). More services are active on each Windows release, so, if you want a complete OS you have to agree that this doesn't come magically. Even a fast new machine can't beat Win95 boot time on an old machine. Not to mention old DOS boot time. Even older Linux distros had less services and things to load at boot time than newer distros, but you don't pay the price of taking care of nasty things like automatically configuring networks, new hardware, modems, soundcards, and plugable devices. It's just newer systems make your life easier.

Reply Score: 2

housemate's G3
by geist on Sat 8th Jul 2006 19:39 UTC
geist
Member since:
2005-07-11

As the ex-housemate Eugenia mentioned, I wanted to note that I still use that old 500Mhz G3 imac. Works like a champ running Tiger. I think the only upgrade I ever did was increase the 128MB it came with to 256.

OS X has most definitely gotten faster over the years. Or probably more accurately put, it has gotten less slow.

Reply Score: 2

Never owned a Mac
by WereCatf on Sat 8th Jul 2006 20:03 UTC
WereCatf
Member since:
2006-02-15

This article just piqued my interest. I have never been able to see a Mac in action, or even less touch one, so it would be very nice to get one, even an older model. Atleast I could tinker with it a bit. Maybe even learn something =P The only problem I have is that Macs are quite expensive, and I don't know any place here in Finland which sells refurbished Macs... =( Heck, I don't know any place which sells Macs at all. I'd love to get my hands on one of those iMacs =)

Reply Score: 1

G3 Power Mac upgrade
by jonto on Sat 8th Jul 2006 20:34 UTC
jonto
Member since:
2006-06-28

My brother and I both have the green G3 Powermac. He has been using OS 9 since he bought it in 98' or so. I only recently came into acquision of my G3. I was deeply into Linux at that time so I decided to install a Linux PPC distro and had with stellar results. This is not my main computer by any stretch.

Before visiting my family last month, my brother & I chatted about finally getting around to upgrading his Powermac. We set him up on Tiger, and now his machine flies. I would say that it runs faster on Tiger than it did with OS 9.1. (I understand that this is probably because he's never reinstalled his OS before and may have been dealing with defragmentation).

Anyhow...everyone is please with the change. Why? I have no doubt that his machine will last ten years using Apple OS's. I hope that my pending Macbook purchase will last that long.

My parents have not skipped a beat using Tiger either. I'm happy because I don't have to support 9 anymore! Back to the point, I'm seriously thinking about installing OS X on my G3 and blowing away Linux. (Will probably wait for Leopard to come out however)

Reply Score: 1

@Eugenia .. RE: Jaguar support
by memson on Sat 8th Jul 2006 23:17 UTC
memson
Member since:
2006-01-01

Jaguar is supported on Beige G3's. My beige G3 does not have onboard USB - so you're wrong about the assertion you made regarding the requirement of USB.

Reply Score: 2

20 Years from now
by traderjb on Sun 9th Jul 2006 00:02 UTC
traderjb
Member since:
2006-05-16

I wonder, if 20 years from, this will be some sort of hot collectors item like comics and baseball cards from a bygone era are? Not just the fruity pebble iMacs, but other computers as well. Hrmm..

Reply Score: 1

RE: 20 Years from now
by Dave_K on Sun 9th Jul 2006 00:33 UTC in reply to "20 Years from now"
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

Old computers are already collectable, just look at how much an Apple Lisa sells for these days.

Some of the more interesting and unique modern computers are sure to end up collectors items, especially if they have quite a short shelf life.

Even in 20 years time the successful iMac models will probably be a bit too common to really interest collectors, but I bet some of Apple's wierder ideas like the much maligned "Flower Power" iMacs will be highly sought after.

Reply Score: 1

re old Macs
by Umbra on Sun 9th Jul 2006 00:52 UTC
Umbra
Member since:
2006-03-06

I have a 7 years old G3 350mhz Blue/White PowerMac. It has two 120 GB internal 7200 RPM ATA100 disks, one external 250 GB FW400 disk. and 1 GB RAM. USB and Firewire400 where standad items in this model from early 1999 - and a CD-Rom-only. This machine runs Mac OS Tiger wonderfully. Safari just seem to almost "scream" on this old thing. It still has the original 16 MB Ati Rage PCI card.

I use this machine in my home-based-office-business as a sever (it also has the function as a surf-&-music-station in the "smoking room" ;)

Functions:
- WebServer (Apache) for each user
- Fax Server, incoming (archives incoming faxes as PDFs)
- AFP and SMB file server for under 10 users
- Print server
- iTunes music server for all users
- iTunes podcast server (mostly Danish radio & television news, radio shows) (get's podcast for all users and stores them)
- BackupStation for under 10 users
- Fink Unix package test-station & occasional compilings of Fink sources

This girl has been running almost 365/7/24 for 7 years now, along with the original 17" CRT Apple StudioDisplay (still has the house best & colour-brightest CRT display). It still beats our TFT's in colour brightness

Edited 2006-07-09 00:54

Reply Score: 2

Not quite the same....
by kaiwai on Sun 9th Jul 2006 00:57 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

But I ran MacOS X 10.3 on my old iBook Indigo, with 320MB Ram, and 366Mhz processor, and sure, it didn't set the world alight in terms of performance but as long as you stuck to having nothing more than 2-3 things loaded at once, you won't expect any problem, and the experience will be tolerable.

I've also run MacOS X 10.4.x on a 600Mhz G3 iBook, which again, ran it beautifully - now I'm not going to admit that MacOS X is flawless its optimisation, but what I can say is that your machines will retain alot more of its usability for a lot longer using MacOS X than it would be if you had a computer running Windows XP or Windows 2000.

For Windows 2000, anything less than a 7200rpm hard disk was painful, from the boot up to the responsiveness in respects to loading applications; Windows XP corrected that issue but bought about a whole new saga of issues, such as the requirement of atleast 512MB of ram, after Microsoft bullshitting the public into submission that 256MB should be enough.

I have no qualms with Microsoft Windows, but if they are going tell us the minimum system requirements, they're actually honest in either wha they define as 'minimum' or what one can actually do, at an adequate speed when using 'miniumum'. With Apple, atleast a minimum tends to actually mean, "this is usable at these specs'; and when you do actually use it, its actually usable at the given specifications.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Not quite the same....
by Dave_K on Sun 9th Jul 2006 02:07 UTC in reply to "Not quite the same...."
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

For Windows 2000, anything less than a 7200rpm hard disk was painful, from the boot up to the responsiveness in respects to loading applications

In my experience this isn't true. I run Windows 2000 on a 400Mhz Celeron laptop with a 4200RPM 2.5" hard drive and it's far from painful. Obviously things like application loading are slow compared with a 7200RPM drive in a desktop computer, but not any slower than I'd expect them to be in any other operating system running on that hard drive.

Windows XP corrected that issue but bought about a whole new saga of issues, such as the requirement of atleast 512MB of ram, after Microsoft bullshitting the public into submission that 256MB should be enough.

Windows 2000 and XP are both perfectly usable on a system with 256Mb RAM, less if you turn off unnecessary services and keep the system fairly clean. I've used a Windows XP system with only 96Mb RAM, and while it wasn't a pleasant experience, it was usable for word processing and light web browsing.

Don't get me wrong, I find the usability of Mac OS X on slower hardware quite impressive considering how feature rich it is. But in my experience Windows 2K and XP are both perfectly usable on Pentium 2 era hardware, and Microsofts minimum requirements aren't that inaccurate. Of course it looks like that'll change when Microsoft finally release Vista...

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Not quite the same....
by deathshadow on Sun 9th Jul 2006 04:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Not quite the same...."
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Don't get me wrong, I find the usability of Mac OS X on slower hardware quite impressive considering how feature rich it is.

That's been my impression too... in fact, I've noticed it's performance is a bit... flat across platforms - it seems to take a LOT more computer to get noticable UI and app performance...

Although in all the OS' that come with GUI's these days, the more eye candy, the more your performance hinges on your system RAM. Anything under 256 megs on a slow processor is death, be it 2K, XP, OSX or Gnome/KDE (I'm listing the WM's, not the OS since THEY seem to be the deciding factor, not the actual OS)... You break that 256 meg barrier, and ALL of those operating systems see major gains in performance.

2K and XP CAN be leaned out to run below that mark, and even on high memory systems some simple changes to the UI itself can give night and day performance changes. Cursor shadow, window shadow, window effects, screen saver, wallpaper, even the 'luna theme' in XP - turn all that crap OFF and the performance change is... quite surprising. (which if you axe the telnet server, rip outlook out by the nuts, etc, you can strip XP down to be competative with a XFCE based linux distro in performance terms)... That's one thing I have to hand to MS - even in vista, they are STILL giving us a option to turn all that crap OFF.

Which makes one wonder what gains we'd see under OSX if they let you axe all that extra crap... and NO, the extra program that runs in memory all the time to kill the shadows is NOT what I'm talking about - if anything that's MORE bloat... But again, Apple does NOT want you customizing ANYTHING on their systems... For all their talk of creativity the LACK of customizations on their platform is truly... pathetic. Unless of course you WANT to add even more RAM chewing bullshit graphics. (yes shapeshifter, I'm pointing the finger at you)

But then, to me eye candy just gets in the way of putting REAL data and content on the screen.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Not quite the same....
by PowerMacX on Sun 9th Jul 2006 05:12 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Not quite the same...."
PowerMacX Member since:
2005-11-06

2K and XP CAN be leaned out to run below that mark, and even on high memory systems some simple changes to the UI itself can give night and day performance changes. Cursor shadow, window shadow, window effects, screen saver, wallpaper, even the 'luna theme' in XP - turn all that crap OFF and the performance change is... quite surprising. (which if you axe the telnet server, rip outlook out by the nuts, etc, you can strip XP down to be competative with a XFCE based linux distro in performance terms)... That's one thing I have to hand to MS - even in vista, they are STILL giving us a option to turn all that crap OFF.

Which makes one wonder what gains we'd see under OSX if they let you axe all that extra crap... and NO, the extra program that runs in memory all the time to kill the shadows is NOT what I'm talking about - if anything that's MORE bloat... But again, Apple does NOT want you customizing ANYTHING on their systems... For all their talk of creativity the LACK of customizations on their platform is truly... pathetic.


On OS X, cursor shadow is automatically off if your system isn't can't handle it gracefully, window animations (opening folders, Exposť, minimizing windows, etc) throttle down the FPS so they are choppier but take no more time than on a fast system, widgets don't do fancy water ripple/3D flips if not supported in hardware by your GPU (even when there is a software fallback).

So, I would say that they just use different approaches: In Windows, it will run like crap by default on really old systems unless you tweak a couple dozen options by hand. In OS X, it would be done automatically since Apple knows exactly what each of its hardware configs is capable of.

But then, to me eye candy just gets in the way of putting REAL data and content on the screen.

Did you realize that OS X favors the use of border-less windows, which allow you to put more *whatever* on the screen, and that this is possible because the drop shadows serve as a good, non-intrusive replacement for said borders? The same drop shadows you consider eye candy?

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Not quite the same....
by deathshadow on Sun 9th Jul 2006 05:23 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Not quite the same...."
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Did you realize that OS X favors the use of border-less windows, which allow you to put more *whatever* on the screen, and that this is possible because the drop shadows serve as a good, non-intrusive replacement for said borders? The same drop shadows you consider eye candy?

And that make resizing windows a pain in the ass, chew up endless CPU on machines (like the ATI Rage LT equipped) that don't have accellerated alpha, and much like transparancies make dealing with actual CONTENT a royal pain as well, ESPECIALLY if you try to go 'edge to edge' on the borders. I end up switching back and forth between which window has the focus just to get rid of the shadow for a moment.

I'll take a 2-4 pixel border over this crap anyday.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Not quite the same....
by PowerMacX on Sun 9th Jul 2006 05:33 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Not quite the same...."
PowerMacX Member since:
2005-11-06

I'm typing this from a 466Mhz G4 with an ATI Rage 128Pro (16MB) card circa 2000, and having shadow on or off makes NO DIFFERENCE in dragging or resizing windows. I've also used OS X on an old PowerBook with just 4MB of VRAM (with XpostFacto) and the difference was minimal.

edit: fixed broken bold tag

Edited 2006-07-09 05:34

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Not quite the same....
by deathshadow on Sun 9th Jul 2006 16:55 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Not quite the same...."
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> I'm typing this from a 466Mhz G4 with an ATI Rage 128Pro (16MB) card circa 2000, and having shadow on or off makes NO DIFFERENCE in dragging or resizing windows. I've also used OS X on an old PowerBook with just 4MB of VRAM (with XpostFacto) and the difference was minimal.

and how are you turning off the shadows? Using a resident third party utility like Shadowkiller? Sure as hell aren't doing it with anything built in to the OS. Hate to break it to you, but that just chews up as much memory AND still leaves the uber-blitter engine (in which all the windows are now drawn) running.

Goes hand in hand with why having multiple items on the desktop can start to drag OS X under - even the ICONS on the desktop are handled as fully qualified window objects drawn with the 'accellerated' blitter. You drop down to the 2 meg Rage Mobility (aka Rage LT) used in the early (sub 500mhz) G3's and you've got no accelleration in OSX, which is where you'd see a real difference.

Seriously, on OS X more time is probably spent drawing the window frame than is spent on the window CONTENTS.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Not quite the same....
by kaiwai on Sun 9th Jul 2006 05:04 UTC in reply to "RE: Not quite the same...."
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

In my experience this isn't true. I run Windows 2000 on a 400Mhz Celeron laptop with a 4200RPM 2.5" hard drive and it's far from painful. Obviously things like application loading are slow compared with a 7200RPM drive in a desktop computer, but not any slower than I'd expect them to be in any other operating system running on that hard drive.

When I was running it, it was on a Pentium III 550Mhz, a stock Dell XPS 550 (coppermine PIII), loaded with 512MB of ram, and a 10gig 5400rpm hard disk; the loading of Windows 2000 Professional was painful, and even that is a compliment.

A year or so later, I upgraded the hard disk to a MaXtor Diamond Max 7200rpm hard disk, changed the graphics card (I doubt that would have changed things) to a Matrox G550 (from a 32MB TNT2 graphics card); the boot time went from the slow progress bar (before the splash screen) to something equaling of flying accross the screen in a few seconds.

The loading of large applications went from being able to go off, make a coffee and come back to see something finally loaded to something that approaches instantaneous loading.

Windows 2000 and XP are both perfectly usable on a system with 256Mb RAM, less if you turn off unnecessary services and keep the system fairly clean. I've used a Windows XP system with only 96Mb RAM, and while it wasn't a pleasant experience, it was usable for word processing and light web browsing.

But I am looking at it from a normal users perspective; ordinary users do not stuff around with which services get loaded - they load the operating system onto their computer, and pray that all work well.

Now Windows 2000 worked nicely under the Pentium 233 (MMX) along with 512MB of memory; the speed of the processor itself doesn't necessarily cause the bottle necks, but the availability of memory - thats what kills many of the new operating systems these days in terms of peformance (that, and hard disk speed).

Don't get me wrong, I find the usability of Mac OS X on slower hardware quite impressive considering how feature rich it is. But in my experience Windows 2K and XP are both perfectly usable on Pentium 2 era hardware, and Microsofts minimum requirements aren't that inaccurate. Of course it looks like that'll change when Microsoft finally release Vista...

True, but thats Pentium 2 era hardware; G3 is equal to that of the early Pentium MMX/II hardware, G4 being around where P3 is, in regards to performance and technology.

The problem with Vista is this; will there be enough compelling features for people to justify the migration not only to a new operating system but whether there is enough justification to upgrade the hardware as well?

Given that alot of the new features are under the hood, and only relevant to developers, its going to be atlease 3 years after the release of Vista before we start seeing Vista optimised and Vista tuned software that'll take advantage of these new features.

Compare that to Apple MacOS X and the delivery of Spotlight/Coredata, and how quickly these features were merged into products; and the worse performer was Microsoft with a year delay between Spotlight release and it being incorporated into Entourage.

The problem is with the Windows world, to put it crudely, is its full of lazy programmers who sit around whining about the big evil Microsoft rather than embracing the new features which they make available to their programmers, the net result, we end up with new operating systems being released, with antiquated application from half baked third party vendors who can't be bothered delivering a decent product to the end users; can any one blame Apple from releasing Apature given the shithouse embracing of the new technologys MacOS X has made available in the way of CoreImage and CoreVideo?

Anyway, gone off on a tangent, but I think ultimately whether or not Vista will be a success will not be based on how well it runs on old hardware, but whether the third party vendors get off their ass and start delivering products that take advantage of the new features in Vista.

Edited 2006-07-09 05:07

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Not quite the same....
by Dave_K on Sun 9th Jul 2006 13:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Not quite the same...."
Dave_K Member since:
2005-11-16

When I was running it, it was on a Pentium III 550Mhz, a stock Dell XPS 550 (coppermine PIII), loaded with 512MB of ram, and a 10gig 5400rpm hard disk; the loading of Windows 2000 Professional was painful, and even that is a compliment.

A year or so later, I upgraded the hard disk to a MaXtor Diamond Max 7200rpm hard disk, changed the graphics card (I doubt that would have changed things) to a Matrox G550 (from a 32MB TNT2 graphics card); the boot time went from the slow progress bar (before the splash screen) to something equaling of flying accross the screen in a few seconds.

The loading of large applications went from being able to go off, make a coffee and come back to see something finally loaded to something that approaches instantaneous loading.


Regardless of the OS used, I don't think there's any way for the difference in speed between 5400RPM and 7200RPM drives to account for that change. I suspect that the 5400RPM drive was badly fragmented, had barely any free space, or was suffering a hardware fault.

Did you also reinstall Windows when you upgraded the drive? If the Windows installation had developed problems then that could account for the difference in speed.

Switching from a 5400RPM drive to a larger 7200RPM drive in my old Windows 2000 system made a fairly subtle difference that was only really noticeable when working with large files. Even with the 4200RPM drive in my laptop, applications like Opera and MS Word load in a matter of seconds, and Windows 2000 boot time is a touch faster than Linux running on the same system.

You may have suffered from some unusual problem that crippled performance, but that doesn't mean that Windows 2000 always performs like that on a slower drive. There are plenty of people who've used Windows 2000 on laptops and desktops with 4200/5400RPM drives, yet I haven't seen many people with the same complaint about speed. You shouldn't assume that a problem specific to your system occurs for everyone.

But I am looking at it from a normal users perspective; ordinary users do not stuff around with which services get loaded - they load the operating system onto their computer, and pray that all work well.

You stated that Windows XP requires at least 512Mb RAM, in my experience it runs perfectly well on 256Mb without any tweaking of the system. It's true that you need to know more than an ordinary user if you want Windows XP to run acceptably on a system with only 128Mb RAM, but then Mac OS X would crawl with that too.

True, but thats Pentium 2 era hardware; G3 is equal to that of the early Pentium MMX/II hardware, G4 being around where P3 is, in regards to performance and technology.

Are you sure about that? Most of the benchmarks I remember from back then indicated that the G3 was faster than a PII at the same Mhz, and I'm not just talking about Apple's claims. As I've said before, Windows 2000 and XP both run well on my 400Mhz Celeron laptop, I'd have though that even a low end desktop G3 wouldn't be much slower than that.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Not quite the same....
by Agent69 on Sun 9th Jul 2006 14:43 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Not quite the same...."
Agent69 Member since:
2005-07-07

You stated that Windows XP requires at least 512Mb RAM, in my experience it runs perfectly well on 256Mb without any tweaking of the system.

I agree. I'm typing this on my wife's old computer, a 1.2ghz Celeron with 256MB of RAM and a TNT2 4xAGP video card. I find XP SP2 runs fine on this machine, provided you don't load too many memory hungry programs at a time (I often have Firefox, uTorrent, and Foobar2000 running at the same time with no problems). I also run as a limited user, for security reasons.

Reply Score: 1

G3 Powerhouse
by vogelar on Sun 9th Jul 2006 05:43 UTC
vogelar
Member since:
2006-04-03

I used to have the exact same model as in the article. Instead, mine spec'd at G3/400, 512MB, 80GB 7200RPM, and Airport. And I must say, it was a great TV on my desk.

DVD playback in OS 9 on the machine was horrid (the DVD Player was Beta only back then) but in 10.3.9 it was perfectly smooth. One thing to note is that you can also max this model with 1GB of RAM, which makes a huge difference, along with a high RPM drive.

My favorite part of this particular machine is the utter lack of fans. The only motor in the entire system is the hard drive, which means the iMac is pretty much silent compared to my Athlon box.

I installed OS 9.2.2, OS 10.3.9, NetBSD, OpenBSD, YellowDog, and Gentoo on the hardware at least once in it's lifespan and they all ran quite fine. The slowest part (aside from compiling sources) was when applications loaded from disk, as you would expect with any machine.

This thing is ideal for a first Mac, but if you can get a G4 CRT model, go for it. They take up so little space and you'll be the hit of the party!

Reply Score: 1

old imacs are a great deal right now
by mark on Sun 9th Jul 2006 12:53 UTC
mark
Member since:
2005-07-06

I found a G3 350 at a goodwill store for 25 dollars. I transplanted a G3 700 motherboard, a slot load cd-rw, an 80 gig hard drive, and 512 megs of ram. You have to move the heat sink for the newer motherboard. Total cost was about 150 dollars. It is running OS 10.4.5 without any problems.

Reply Score: 1

iLife / iPhoto usage?
by Damien on Sun 9th Jul 2006 15:51 UTC
Damien
Member since:
2005-07-07

What is iPhoto and the other iLife software like on a system like this? I'm sorely tempted to get one, just to start scratching an itch before spending large(r) wads of cash.

Damien

Reply Score: 1

RE: iLife / iPhoto usage?
by henrikmk on Mon 10th Jul 2006 16:35 UTC in reply to "iLife / iPhoto usage?"
henrikmk Member since:
2005-07-10

Using Panther on a Powermac 333 Mhz G3, I'd say this is just too slow. I worked with iMovie, iPhoto and they are both just barely usable.

One of the problems is that the iLife programs use Quartz Extreme a lot and so effects previews and rendering will become very slow on machines without that capability.

I think a program like Pages would run just fine though.

Be aware that Garageband requires a G4, IIRC.

I think when you get such a slow machine, you should not expect to use it for anything but the most basic. I used the old Powermac for code writing and testing out websites, and it's excellent for that, but it was no good for more intense stuff.

Reply Score: 1

System 9/ OSX
by cutterjohn on Sun 9th Jul 2006 17:37 UTC
cutterjohn
Member since:
2006-01-28

(I'll call it system 9, as I started with macs when the OS was called System XYZ)

In any event, yes, I remember the older versions of OSX. And if you thought that 10.1 was slow, you should've tried out 10.0, then you would've thought that 10.1 was a relative speed demon, and 10.2 whoa, hang onto your chairs.

The funny thing is, I remember DP3 was much faster, and I actually liked it better than what became the beta and 10.0. IIRC it lacked aqua, still ran classic like the linux program(I've forgotten the name ATM) that runs MacOS8/9in a window(or full screen).

Booting back into MacOS 9 at the time felt like you had unleashed the power of the machines(mainly 500MHz G3 & G4s). In fact for a while I switched entirely back to using MacOS 9 as OSX wass so grotesquely ungainly. There are a few problems with using MacOS 9 that you neglected to mention, such as iCab being your only choice of an "up-to-date" browser, finding some of the old classic apps(several seem to have disappeared recently a definite sign of orphanage), etc. Frankly, I'd be more likely to suggest installing Ubuntu or Yellowdog Linux on such a machine if not OSX. (Problem with ppc linux diistros is that you'll have to use IBM's Java(find and instal on your own and deal with package reqs), deal with MANY packages missing dependent packages(again find and build the package or hope that someone else already has), power management is even flakier than on x86, etc.

10.4: Yes, the did some nice hacks to get some speed back into the OS, especially the Finder, but they shoud ahve entirely re-written(or again) long ago as it still has many problems. Memory management still isn't that great as OSX is incedibly reticent to release memory even for programs that have long since shut down. (I've found a workaround that works for some programs, probably related to whether they're Cocoa, Carbon, or some other API based, of restarting the app, then quitting it. With Opera and a few others it seems to force garbage collection in the memory management subsystem releasing resoources once hogged by those apps...) In any event I certainly wouldn't expect good multi-application performance of newer OSX versions without a min. of 512M RAM, preferably 1G. (The memory management problems are FAR more evident on a system with only 384M RAM, while on system with 640M and more have enough extra headroom to handle the problems until the user really goes nuts or uses a RAM hogging(for whatever reason, need, lousy API libs, etc.) app.

Reply Score: 1

RE: System 9/ OSX
by henderson101 on Mon 10th Jul 2006 12:13 UTC in reply to "System 9/ OSX"
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

>> The funny thing is, I remember DP3 was much faster, and I actually liked it better than what became the beta and 10.0. IIRC it lacked aqua, still ran classic like the linux program(I've forgotten the name ATM) that runs MacOS8/9in a window(or full screen). <<

Would be most likely still using more of Rhapsody. Rhapsody looked like OS8.x, but there were some quirks in the Window management. It wasn't as pleasant as Openstep to use. Grafting the MacOS UI on to the underlying Openstep base was a horrible idea that is still biting them on the ass.

Reply Score: 1

RE: System 9/ OSX
by henrikmk on Mon 10th Jul 2006 16:42 UTC in reply to "System 9/ OSX"
henrikmk Member since:
2005-07-10

In any event I certainly wouldn't expect good multi-application performance of newer OSX versions without a min. of 512M RAM, preferably 1G. (The memory management problems are FAR more evident on a system with only 384M RAM, while on system with 640M and more have enough extra headroom to handle the problems until the user really goes nuts or uses a RAM hogging(for whatever reason, need, lousy API libs, etc.) app.

One thing I'm looking forward to see is how OSX performs on solid state disks. This could speed it up tremendously on slow hardware. I know that OSX Tiger is only a bit faster at swapping on my PPC Mac Mini than Panther was on the powermac 333 Mhz with a SCSI drive. RAM would become less of a problem.

It seems to me if you throw very fast disks at OSX, it speeds up a lot, more than it would with a faster CPU.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: System 9/ OSX
by deathshadow on Mon 10th Jul 2006 20:53 UTC in reply to "RE: System 9/ OSX"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> It seems to me if you throw very fast disks at OSX, it speeds up a lot, more than it would with a faster CPU.

That's because even with 512 megs it's swapping to the disk like CRAZY... Which is why you see even MORE of a performance boost from RAM than you do any other factor in OSX.

Reply Score: 1

I still have...
by Tuishimi on Mon 10th Jul 2006 03:51 UTC
Tuishimi
Member since:
2005-07-06

...a "Snow" G3 iMac. 512 MB ram, 600mhz cpu, DVD player. Nice little machine! We are thinking, however, of giving it to some friends.

Reply Score: 1

RAM usage
by situation on Mon 10th Jul 2006 16:01 UTC
situation
Member since:
2006-01-10

A whole 150mb available "to spend" on boot? Wow that is painful, considering how little Linux can run on with a relatively modern wm (or it can run on peanuts on a barebones wm). I guess some people will go on and on about how the OS X interface is great and _deserves_ that much RAM, but really 170mb usage at idle is terrible. Even XP can be brought down to a bit under 100mb. Things like that keep me away from OS X.

Browser: Links (0.99; Linux 2.6.13 i686; 171x68)

Reply Score: 1

iBook g3
by mrskinny on Tue 11th Jul 2006 02:23 UTC
mrskinny
Member since:
2006-07-11

Still Kicks Ass! I think in the next 10 years, my apple iBook G3 will be regarded as one of their finest machines. It had some trouble with the screen + logic board circuitry, but the damn toy whirls and spins at a speed that with 640 MB of ram and its 800Mhz processor, i am still not swooned by the G4 iBooks, and it seems the new MacBooks have the same screen going black problem that I had with my G3. I've dropped it a couple of times, and it can still put out entire websites in Flash, Photoshop, and Whatever Else You Want! It is king. But i am ready to move on. But the conclusion was that Its not outdated yet. Not until they force me to buy a new Processor to support their "new and better" software. Ugh

Edited 2006-07-11 02:24

Reply Score: 1